Dear Conservancy colleagues,

While the Parks Conservancy has long been regarded as an innovator in the delivery of exceptional projects and programs, it has not been so nimble in harnessing data management innovation in its pursuit of excellence. The geographic dispersion and the founding of many programs have resulted in decentralized management of data. As a result, much of the Conservancy’s data resides in disparate systems or on paper and is prevented from being fully leveraged to achieve maximum mission impact. Such systems also are an enormous burden to staff members agency wide!

In our digital age, we must adapt our business models to a competitive environment where data-driven decisions are critical to our success. To accomplish this, we need to provide better data to the people who need it to do their jobs. This is a relatively new functional area known as Data Governance, one where the business needs and technological abilities intersect with the goal of helping people use data confidently.

I’m delighted to announce that our own Vice President of Finance, J Mark Jenkins, has agreed to take on this new function and apply his passion for providing timely, relevant and accurate financial data to other data needs of the Conservancy in our new pursuit of Data for All Forever! Jessica Kahlich, who has been serving as our Database Administrator and focusing on the data management needs of many of our Community Programs, has agreed to step up as our new Data Manager and serve as the founding lead of our Data Analytics Department. Jessica will report to J Mark.

They have planned a 3-year phased plan for implementing the new Data Analytics department, which will begin operations on May 14th. The complete build out of this new function will take some time, and they have engaged the technology consultants at our audit firm, Armanino LLP, to assist them in setting the Data Analytics function up for success.

Data Analytics shall:
• Migrate our legacy systems into the Cloud so that they can be connected to eliminate redundant data entry
• Provide for data warehousing to allow us to mine data to allow us to provide 360◦ view of our constituents
• Enhance collaboration across teams and geographies
• Ensure the integrity of our data so that decisions can be made with confidence

The vision for the structure of the Data Strategy function will provide for a “hub and spoke” model of support, with a core team led by Jessica, that will focus exclusively on Conservancy data management and strategy needs. Data Assistants who will directly support the user platforms will reside in the departments so that the user needs of each constituent group are clearly understood and able to be nimbly handled at the front line.

They are forming a Data Council to include user representatives from each user group who will meet regularly with the core team for oversight and to ensure that future decisions for upgrades and new systems investments are well informed. Mike Moser will also be joining them so that they can build a seamless partnership to collaborate on shared responsibilities around security and systems infrastructure, among others. A Data Admin Committee for the Data Assistants will also be formed to provide for central coordination of training and work that crosses our various systems and user groups.

Jessica will head the Data Analytics Department effective May 14th, 2018 which will be located in Building 102 with the Finance & Accounting team. They are planning their first Data Council and Data Admin Committee meeting for June when they will also begin their work with Armanino.

Please join me in welcoming and congratulating both Jessica and J Mark for taking on this extremely important function at the Conservancy!!!

To get them started in our data journey here is a link to a survey. Please fill this out as soon as is possible to let our new team know where you and your team are at with data. From this “data on data” we can tailor our support and first meetings to your needs.

Best to you all,


Dept. Updates

Loading widget...
No files to show